Accidents in Canada, 1988 and 1993 - ARCHIVED

Articles and reports: 82-003-X19950022506


Using data from Statistics Canada's 1988 and 1993 General Social Survey (GSS), this article examines the incidence and consequences of accidents in Canada and the characteristics of respondents aged 15 and over who were involved in them. In 1993, an estimated 3.9 million Canadians reported that they had been involved in 4.8 million accidents in the previous 12 months. Motor vehicle accidents and sports accidents were the most frequent, each accounting for about 27% of incidents, followed by accidents at work (21%) and at home (14%). Accidents were most common among young people, particularly men. However, from 1988 to 1993, there was a decline in the proportion of adults reporting accidents, and the sharpest drop was for the age group most at risk - 15-to 24-year-olds. Most of the downturn was attributable to a decrease in the motor vehicle accident rate. Since alcohol is known to be associated with accidents, reduced consumption during the same period may have been partly responsible for the decline in accident rates. Other factors that may have contributed include stricter enforcement of impaired driving legislation and speeds limits, and improvements in automobile safety. Nonetheless, despite the decline in accidents rates, the toll taken by accidents reported in 1993 was considerable: 80% of accidents caused personal injury, and almost half of these resulted in medical attention in a hospital. Overall, 62% of accidents resulted in activity-loss days, and 29% involved bed-disability days. Hospital utilization costs associated with these accidents in 1993 were about $1.5 billion. As well, about one-third of accidents involved out-of-pocket expenses, totalling $791 million. Moreover, accidents continue to be the leading cause of death among persons under age 44.

Issue Number: 1995002
Author(s): Millar, Wayne J.

Main Product: Health Reports

FormatRelease dateMore information
PDFNovember 20, 1995